The animal kingdom presents little calling for notice. Lions, formerly very plentiful, are now extremely rare; leopards, panthers, jackals, and hyaenas are still common; and monkeys and apes are numerous. The wild boar is found in the oak forests, and the brown bear in the higher parts of the country. There are also various species of antelope. Of the feathered tribes, eagles, vultures, hawks, and owls are common; snipes, curlews, plovers, storks, and herons frequent the marshy parts; and the ostrich has its habitat in the desert. Among the reptiles are various species of serpents, tortoises, turtles, lizards, &c.
Locusts are common, and sometimes do great damage to the crops. One of the severest invasions of these pests ever known occurred in 1866, when the crops were nearly all destroyed, and the loss sustained by the colonists was estimated at £800,000.
The coast is rich in coral and sponges, and the obtaining of these forms a considerable branch of industry.
The chief wealth of most of the Arab tribes consists in their sheep, of which they frequently possess immense flocks; camels are also common, but the horses and mules are more esteemed, and are noted for their excellence.
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Algeria - Table of Contents